The A.V. Club's Scores

For 5,994 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Lake of Fire
Lowest review score: 0 From Justin to Kelly
Score distribution:
5,994 movie reviews
  1. A florid, often lurid, completely enthralling film held in place by a disarming Portman, who rarely leaves the frame.
  2. The footage, edited by Actress director Robert Greene, coheres into what feels like one long, chaotic school day. You can practically feel the pulse of grown-up veins, the fraying of last nerves.
  3. A Prophet has been compared to American TV series like "Oz" for its episodic plot and large cast, but it’s more like a Gallic "Goodfellas": thoroughly absorbing, exciting, even poetic. It’s a full evening’s entertainment.
  4. The gut-churningly nasty Pusher III practically justifies the whole series, as it digs deep into the angst of a drug kingpin—a junkie himself—nagged by a thousand little business details and taunted by all the young, carefree libertines he sees enjoying themselves at his drug dens.
  5. For the most part, Willmott succeeds thrillingly.
  6. The bloodshed is fast and brutal — the flash of a knife, a splash of crimson in a backseat, an opening robbery gone horrifically awry. There’s even a little Tarantino in the staging, as when a blood-splattered wallflower unleashes her Kill Bill-style vengeance straight into the camera lens.
  7. The effect of Room 237 is intense. It’s a deep dive into the rabbit hole of semiotics, designed to train viewers to become alert to what they’re really seeing.
  8. Holofcener possesses a genius for creating exquisitely realized characters who seem to have led full, rich, complicated lives before the film's first scene takes place, and will go on living complex, idiosyncratic existences long after they disappear from the screen. Of course, it doesn't hurt that she has four of the best actresses in Hollywood as the leads, especially Keener.
  9. The result is immersive and intelligent, but not what one would call difficult. Graf’s knack for no-nonsense storytelling means that Beloved Sisters seems to fly past.
  10. Drenched in the evening glow of its urban and suburban backdrops, Darker comes alive in the dark, when its characters are drowning their sorrows in song, the sauce, or conversation.
  11. A Piece of Work is the antithesis of Jerry Seinfeld's engaging but superficial 2002 documentary "Comedian": where the innately private Seinfeld holds nearly everything back, Rivers loudly broadcasts the kind of fears, anxieties, and ambitions most people would do anything to hide.
  12. Trumbo sexes up Trumbo's already dramatic story with a massive infusion of star power.
  13. The body means different things for each of them, and Ceylan's mesmerizing existential drama takes its time establishing the players and bringing their inner lives into focus. It's cinema as autopsy.
  14. The Last Of The Unjust is demanding but fascinating, both as history and as an intellectual volley on the lure of power, the ambiguities of perspective, and the difficulty of claiming moral high ground in a context where matters of life and death are so precarious.
  15. Raimi’s new film feels distinctly unburdened and fun, happily frolicking in its own pulp silliness.
  16. Bird and his co-writers leave room for quiet moments and gentle morals, but for the most part, they send visual gags and verbal punchlines tearing past at an enjoyably demanding speed, whipping up the film's energy at every turn.
  17. The Coens direct True Grit with a light touch, but like Portis' stark, funny novel, their adventure tale shaves off none of the rough edges.
  18. Over The Hedge stands out as genuinely witty and even a little barbed. Its chipper, sneering outsider's look at suburban sprawl and conformity isn't going to change the world, but it's still self-aware enough to be reasonably smart.
  19. Cholodenko's casually observant style perfectly matches the cast's thoughtful work, though the film ultimately proves more successful at creating messy situations than trying to resolve them.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Dior And I isn’t any kind of hard-hitting exposé. Tcheng — who previously co-directed another style doc, "Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel" — is seduced by this exclusive world, and he communicates that allure with undeniable flair.
  20. Tarantino simply isn't a good enough performer for his presence to be anything but a distraction in a rip-roaring crowd-pleaser this consistently great.
  21. A surprisingly intimate behind-the-scenes documentary.
  22. Ramon Zürcher’s miniature debut, The Strange Little Cat, is one of the most confident and unusual first features in recent memory.
  23. The generous, sharp performances, especially Garai's, deepen the story's emotional impact, as does Wright's assured, frequently astounding direction.
  24. It’s a credit to both Mackenzie’s talent as a director of actors and to the underlying humaneness of his vision that he argues that the right option is the more difficult and less predictable one — and that he does so without relying on sentimentality, unearned sympathy, or a happy ending.
  25. Because the movie plays on so many common fears - including fears of being in a remote house with big windows when intruders arrive - the confusion of Martha Marcy May Marlene proves effective, not sloppy.
  26. Believe it or not, though, the real horror of this superb Aussie monster movie has almost nothing to do with the title fiend and everything to do with the unspoken, unspeakable impulses he represents. Remove the Babadook from The Babadook, in other words, and something plenty terrifying remains.
  27. By the time Feuerzeig gets to his final shot--an artful portrait of Johnston's parents, with their son looming over them like a curse--he's emerged with the most harrowing and aesthetically keen portrait of madness and artistic inspiration since "Crumb."
  28. History Boys boasts a dazzling verbal cleverness--the gleeful rat-a-tat of snappy banter expertly executed--that doesn't keep it from also being deeply, exquisitely sad.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    It’s enough for Workman to simply assemble a patchwork of Welles in his myriad incarnations (as the hearty Falstaff in Chimes At Midnight; as an arched-eyebrow spokesman for Paul Masson wine; as The Third Man’s cynical Harry Lime; as a sharp, vital youth and a sharp, frail elder) and allow the many faces to confirm, contradict, and, ultimately, speak for themselves.

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